News / Africa

US Urges Immediate North-South Sudan Talks on Abyei Crisis

US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Johnnie Carson (file photo)
US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Johnnie Carson (file photo)

The United States is calling for immediate talks between the leaders of northern and southern Sudan to resolve a territorial dispute that threatens the peaceful secession of the south on July 9th. Two senior U.S. envoys visited Khartoum Wednesday to underscore U.S. concern.

The State Department’s chief Africa diplomat is calling for emergency north-south Sudanese talks to settle a crisis over the disputed Abyei region that threatens the country’s six-year peace process.

Southern Sudan is due to become an independent state July 9th to climax fulfillment of the country’s 2005 Comprehensive Peace Accord, the CPA.

A relatively-smooth implementation process was jolted in last month when northern troops seized most of the Abyei region, an oil-rich area in the central part of the country that remains in dispute.

At a press event here, Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Johnnie Carson reiterated U.S. condemnation of the northern military move.

He called on Sudanese President Omar el-Bashir and southern leader Salva Kiir to hold immediate talks on ways to restore calm, uphold the CPA, and recommit to a peaceful resolution of the Abyei issue.

“We are deeply concerned about the situation in Abyei, and in southern Sudan," said Carson. "We want to do as much as we possibly can between now and July 9th to assure that the Comprehensive Peace Agreement is fully complied with. We want to see a withdrawal of Sudanese troops from the areas of Abyei. And we are looking for both senior leaders to meet together to discuss how to defuse tensions between the two parties, and to fully implement the remaining items that have to be complied with to complete the CPA.”

Carson said the same message was conveyed by Obama counterterrorism adviser John Brennan and U.S. Sudan Special Envoy Princeton Lyman in talks with senior officials in Khartoum Wednesday.

Brennan will go on to the Gulf region for talks while Lyman will remain in the region to work with the Sudanese parties, the African Union and the United Nations to address the Abyei crisis.

The Obama administration has held out the removal of the Khartoum government from the U.S. list of State Sponsors of Terrorism - the SST - and normalization of relations with Sudan, as incentives for allowing the peaceful independence of the south.

Carson indicated strongly that the north’s seizure of Abiyei jeopardizes the terrorism list issue and the promised U.S. roadmap to normalized ties.

“The review and the basis for taking them off the list  are defined legislatively, and that will be the most important guidepost," he said. "They have to meet the legislative  requirements for being taken off the SST. But there is no doubt that the events of the last several weeks do undermine people’s confidence in the commitment to follow through on the road map that was laid out some months ago.”

To remove Sudan from the terrorism list, and lift associated sanctions, the Obama administration would have to certify to Congress that the Khartoum government has not been involved in any recent acts of terrorism.

The United States has not had an ambassador in Khartoum since 1998, though it has a diplomatic mission there. It has recently opened a mission in the southern capital, Juba, and has promised to recognize an independent South Sudan in July.

You May Like

Is Air Travel Safe?

Aviation expert says despite tragic losses of Malaysian Airlines flights 370 and 17, industry experienced lowest fatality rate in recorded history last year More

Multimedia 100 Days Later, Nigerian Girls Still Held

Activists holding rallies in Nigeria and several other countries to mark 100th day of captivity for more than 200 schoolgirls being held by Boko Haram More

Chocolate Too Bitter? Swap Sugar for Mushrooms

US food technology company develops fermentation process using mushrooms to reduce bitterness in cocoa beans, believes it will cut sugar content in candy More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israeli
X
Carolyn Presutti
July 23, 2014 1:21 AM
The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israel

The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video NASA Focuses on Earth-Like Planets

For decades, looking for life elsewhere in the universe meant listening for signals that could be from distant civilizations. But recent breakthroughs in space technology refocused some of that effort toward finding planets that may harbor life, even in its primitive form. VOA’s George Putic reports on a recent panel discussion at NASA’s headquarters, in Washington.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.

AppleAndroid